Friday, July 01, 2016

"Dreams" Keeping Up Dean Jones

Dean Jones is ubiquitous. I mean, he produces just about everyone who's anyone in the kindie biz (I don't dare even start a list for fear of missing someone). Now he's gone back to the recording board and released a new solo offering – IN MY DREAMS. Jones' Dog On Fleas group seems to be turning into his E Street Band; there when he needs them, but otherwise he's got his finger paints in lots of projects.

IN MY DREAMS is a pretty accurate description for this dreamlike assortment of tunes. "Do You Talk To Yourself" is what we've been saying to our son Ben for years. "In My Dreams I Have A Dog" is a list by a pet-longerer, who manages to work Danger Mouse and Modest Mouse into his wish list. "People Watching" deconstructs the art and importance of reading the emotions and expressions of others. It's also about as close to Paul Simon as Dean Jones gets. "Monkey C Monkey" harkens back to Harry Nilsson. In fact, IN MY DREAMS seems like a throwback to the 1970s, when artists would put out an eclectic collection of songs every so often.

The rockingest tunes may be "Feline" and "What Kind Of Fruit," but then again, there are not many guitars floating through the ether on IN MY DREAMS. There are keyboards and steel pedal drums and lots of echo. Jones is very invested in silly things and if your kids like silly, he's your Dean. The CD front cover depicts a "Where the Wild Things Are" child with his menagerie, illustrated by Giselle Potter, while fruit-headed children dance on the back cover. It's fanciful, flighty, and fun and firmly in line with the music.

Jones says he wrote all the songs while walking in the woods with his dog and there's no reason to doubt him. Strange that the dog does not receive co-writing credits on any of the tracks, though. But then again, on the Talking Heads-esque, "Humans Are Still Evolving," he sings:

I know it's coming soon
We're gonna be more peaceful.
We've got to get rid of that caveman brain.

With IN MY DREAMS, Grammy-winning Jones does not set the kindie on its head. Rather, the CD is a playdate inside a child's imagination, with "Swiss Cheese Angels" and "Fly Like A Bird" wafting out like sonic waves. You can't cage imagination and Jones takes young listeners soaring, time and time again. Are you going to be the fuddy duddy who clips those wings?

IN MY DREAMS is available from the Dog on Fleas website, Amazon, and iTunes.

Here is the video for the song, "What Kind of Fruit":

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